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external territory of Australia in the Indian Ocean
Oceania > Australia > Ashmore and Cartier Islands

Ashmore and Cartier Islands-CIA WFB Map.png
Population 0
Time zone UTC+08:00

Ashmore and Cartier Islands are a territory off the northwest coast of Australia.


These uninhabited islands came under Australian authority in 1931; formal administration began two years later. Ashmore Reef supports a rich and diverse avian and marine habitat; in 1983 it became a National Nature Reserve. Cartier Island, a former bombing range, is now a marine reserve. This is a difficult travel destination due to restrictions on access and being in the area of illegal boat movements.

Understanding its location is a useful reference point for understanding boats and their passage between Indonesia and Australia. Monitoring of, or patrolling of the location is, in all probability, a part of the Australian government's policies of controlling illegal immigration.


There is mostly no-one to talk to given the islands are uninhabited, although you may come across Australian officials speaking English or Indonesian fisherman speaking Rotinese or other eastern Indonesian languages.

Get inEdit

It is a protected area. A permit from the Australian government is needed for civilians to set foot on the islands.

By planeEdit

No landing strip available

By boatEdit

Not relevant due to status

Get aroundEdit


There are no facilities on the islands



Stay safeEdit

Noting status of water supply, and low lying nature of the islands, best to keep away.

Stay healthyEdit

The wells that may be available have cholera present.

Go nextEdit

If due to an accident you find yourself in the area of these islands and their reefs - the Indonesian island of Roti is 144 km north, and Australia's north west coast is over 300 km to the south.

  • Indonesia
  • Australian mainland
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